Juneteenth is now an official state holiday in Massachusetts.
But it won’t be a day off from school in Bedford—at least not this year.
Superintendent of Schools Philip Conrad advised the School Committee Tuesday that, contrary to initial understanding, he has been informed by the secretary of state’s office that a state holiday that falls on a Saturday is officially observed on a Saturday.
This is in contrast to a state holiday that falls on a Sunday, which is officially observed on the following day.
Since June 19, 2021, is a Saturday, June 18, 2021, will be a school day—actually the last day of school for this academic year, Conrad said. The School Committee took a formal vote to confirm that calendar revision.
Juneteenth celebrates the last vestige of official slavery in the United States. It commemorates June 19, 1865, the day that Union Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger told slaves in Texas about their emancipation from slavery—two-and-a-half years after the Emancipation Proclamation.
Mike Rosenberg can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 781-983-1763